Pelham Bit Questions
I'm narrowing down and really considering trying one out, but I'm not exactly sure which one is [best]..Please tell me which one in your opinion is the harshest, most gentle, easiest to work with, which one is most ideal, etc..To me, the Rubber-Mouthed one looked most promising. Heather Moffet seemed to like the Mullen-Style ones, but I wasn't sure if that was the rubber one, ported one, or straight bar, because some of the captions called them all "Mullens" so please help! I've been reading this book called "Enlightened Equitation" and it has helped encourage me to want to try the whole "softening the mouth" thing. I'm a little tentative of trying this because I do not want to cause anymore problems. I had ruled Pelhams out a little while ago, but have been hearing more and more about them so I figured there was no problem with just trying it out. If it dosen't work I can always sell it I suppose, or try it on a different horse. I've been reading a lot on HOW to use them, but I need to get the real thing if I want to try working with it..
Here's the list:
**When I first saw this I thought it looked relatively mild, but heard that it can be hard to fit to the horse.
**Some of the captions called this a "Tom Thumb" Pelham..Why? Is it anything like it?
Slow Twist Snaffle Style:
http://www.amazon.com/Slow-Twist-Pelham-Bit/dp/B0011UHU8I/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1246381862&sr=1-4**The bit we've been using lately is a Slow-Twist D Ring..He has been shaking his head a little lately with it..Not side-to-side, just lazily shoveling like he's trying to get a fly off his nose..I'm not sure if it's hurting him, pinching, etc..This might not be the best choice..
Mullen Mouth (Straight Bar):
http://www.amazon.com/Mullen-Mouth-Pelham-Bit-Cheeks/dp/B0011UBZEI/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1246381862&sr=1-8**I don't know anything about this one..My first thoughts would be it was mild, but at the same time has no tongue relief..?
Jointed Broken Rubber Snaffle-Style:
http://www.amazon.com/Jointed-Tom-Thumb-Pelham-Bit/dp/B0011UFSLE/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1246381862&sr=1-7**Somewhat mild? They call it a "Tom Thumb" which makes me think maybe it isn't so mild..
http://www.amazon.com/Coronet-Hollow-Mouth-Pelham-Cheeks/dp/B000ETLC90/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1246381862&sr=1-1**Would it pinch? What is the purpose of that middle part even being there?
Pelham bit mullen mouth medium port with chain & hooks - eBay (item 290327000058 end time Jul-02-09 15:41:19 PDT)
**I've used ported bits on most horses I've ridden (and am now working on our other horses to use a snaffle) and the ported bits seem to give (depending on the heighth of the port) a goodly amount of tongue relief. They can be severe and they can be soft depending on what the rider allows. Personally, I would LOVE to somehow give Sunny's mouth a good break.
And even if I don't use one, I sure would love to get an education on them--I see SOOO many people use them, most being in their horse's mouths. Is that a coincidence? Thanks in advance. Sorry for all the bit questions..:oops:
Come ON! Anyone? I need to have some suggestions!
Ok..Weeelll..I figured out what a "Mullen Mouth" is, and I also heard from someone that they wouldn't use the jointed snaffle style one--it can pinch too. Soooo..That pretty much leaves the Mullen mouth, which is looking better and better..The Slow Twist might be a little over-kill, the jointed, too much like a TT AND it probably pinches, but I'm confused about the ported..Is it better? How is the "snaffle part" of it? How dose it work? Would you use the Rubber Mullen or Metal Mullen?
I use a jointed snaffle and my horse loves it, as far as the pinching it depends on how big your horses mouth is and if the bit fits correctly. my horse personally doesnt like the straight bars bc it doesnt take any pressure off. where some horses may like the double jointed pelhams.
I don't know much about Pelham bits, but for a horse that needs it, It's really helpful! I know you probably know that.. sorry.. haha
I was thinking about trying a Rubber Mullen Mouth. Does it have the same effect as regualr port or mullen mouth?
My pony when I was younger went with a metal mullen pelham. It worked very well and never bothered her.
The only thing I would say is that you should make sure you are confident using the double reins and using the different functions of the bit correctly. Using a rein connector will just muddle the signals.
i do believe reading or hearing that having a broken mouthpiece in a pelham defeats the purpose. Don't quote me on that.
I would agree that the slow twist is a bit overkill, and is most likely not needed, and if you feel you need it, I'd go back to basic training to find out why you need it.
I'd start out with a mullen (maybe even a ported mullen if you guy likes a port) and see how he is with that.
Pelhams - one of my favourite subjects. :wink:
I couldn't open some of the links you posted, Sunny06 but I sadly did open the 'twisted' pelham! PLEASE don't go down this route! Horrid bit. :evil:
Many horses don't like the 'bulk' of a rubber or Vulcanite pelham - be it mullen mouth or jointed. Some do, but many 'smaller mouthed' horses just can't cope with the 'bulk' of it.
Jointed pelhams do defeat the object of the bit, and a single jointed pelham particular, is in fact, quite severe.
I would suggest a mullen mouth pelham - mullen mouth pelhams have a very slight curve in the mouthpiece and should have no 'twists' or 'rough' parts on the bit.
One of my lads goes in a low-port pelham - he LOVES this bit, it's what works for us. If you try a mullen mouth, and your horse isn't keen, you could try a low port bit.
PLEASE ALWAYS use a pelham with 2 sets of reins! Roundings (or couplings, not sure what they are called in other parts of the world) defeat the object of the pelham entirely. They are 'incorrect' and should be avoided! If you don't want to ride with a curb bit and 2 sets of reins, then use a kimblewick instead. The pelham gives more 'refined' communication with the hosre, having seperate snaffle rein action and the curb rein action. You should always use 2 sets of reins, a wider pair on the 'snaffle' ring, and a narrower pair on the 'curb' ring.
If you don't know how to hold 2 sets of reins, the simplest way for me to explain is this: (It's not easy writing it down, much easier to show people!) There are 2 ways to hold double reins correctly, this is the one I use:
Sit astride the horse and lay both sets of reins, untwisted, on the horse's neck. Pick up the 'top' set (the wider 'snaffle' rein) and hold them normally with your little finger underneath. THEN with your pointy and middle finger kept together, pick up the narrower (curb) rein between your middle and ring fingers, on the inside of your snaffle reins. This will mean your reins are 'crossed' - the snaffle rein (top rein) is lower in your hand than the curb rein.
Keep more contact on the snaffle rein than the curb rein. The curb rein comes into play with a tweak of your hand.
Finally, you can use different types of curb chain. If you use a metal chain, don't make it too tight and always make sure it is untwisted. ALL types of curb chain should have a little extra 'loop' (a 'fly link') in the middle - this is for the 'lip strap' - a very tiny (and easy to lose!) rolled leather strap which goes from the tiny ring on the bit, through the 'fly link' and to the bit the other side.
Phew...sorry if this is long. If you don't understand what I've written (half the time I don't understand myself :?!) then please shout and I will try and post some photos or explain things more for you.
So in your opinion, if you have a strong horse that is very herd-bound and that will do almost anything he can to get to them, would you use the Mullen or port?
I understand the importance of using 4 reins, and I laugh whenever I see people use roundings--I even saw PESSOA using them! I about died!
When you are riding with a pelham and you want the horse to low his head and soften his jaw, do you use the snaffle rein or curb rein? How about collecting?
When/if I go to use one, I will be sure to hold the reins the way you explained!
Oh and btw: Why do they call them "tom thumb" pelhams? :-|
You are welcome. :-) Sorry if you already knew a lot of what I posted.
Some of the things I see on TV in the 'bit and tack' department on international showjumpers absolutely amaze / horrify/ baffle me! :shock:
Once, as a 'challenge' I managed to identify and describe the use and action of, it must have been getting on for a hundred different bits. NOW there are 'mylers' and 'neue schule' and 'mikmar' and all manner of new bits which I still have to learn!
In the UK, a tom thumb is a totally different bit! Only in the USA have I heard the term 'tom thumb pelham'! Just a confusing difference between continents, I think! :wink:
When I ride one of my horses in a pelham, I use predominantly the snaffle rein for collection and bend, and if the horse gets a little 'above himself' (sometimes literally!) I use a gentle tweak of the curb rein to say 'oi you'! which enourages his head down and for him to round.
Often, when hacking (another confusing difference in continents - hacking = trail riding, I have discovered!) I knot the curb rein and leave them on my horse's neck, as my 'emergency brake' just in case he gets a bit 'psychotic'!
Be careful when schooling in a pelham that you don't use too much curb rein and create 'overbend' rather than 'roundness and outline'. It's very easy to think 'oh, this is nice, the horse is nice and rounded' and in fact the horse is overbending and going behind the bit.
Regarding mullen or low port, I really think it depends on what your horse likes in his mouth. Trying the mullen first is generally a good place to start.
You sound like you have a pretty good idea anyway what you are doing, so good luck in trying. If you need any more help, I'm happy to do my best. :wink:
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